St. Mary le Bow 104/1

Pages 213-217

Historical Gazetteer of London Before the Great Fire Cheapside; Parishes of All Hallows Honey Lane, St Martin Pomary, St Mary Le Bow, St Mary Colechurch and St Pancras Soper Lane. Originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 1987.

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The block defined by the 14th century by Goose Lane to the W. and S., by Bow Lane to the E., and by the way leading to the churchyard of St. Mary le Bow to the N., comprised a group of tenements (104/1-5) which seem to have been arranged in several different ways between the 12th and 17th centuries. Several parts came separately into the possession of the parish in the 14th and 15th centuries; some but not all of these were lost to secular ownership again in 1548. The block was reduced in length N.-S. after the Great Fire when a strip 9 ft. 6 in. (2.9 m.) wide was cut off to widen the way to the churchyard; its length before then was some 73 ft. (22.25 m.). There is no indication that any land was cut off to add to Bow Lane, so the block's pre-Fire width was probably the same as the post-Fire width of 48-50 ft. (14.63 m. to 15.24 m.) E.-W. (fn. 1)

In 1858 the property was no. 3 Bow Lane.

104/1-5, late twelfth and early thirteenth centuries

The earliest known tenants of any part of the block were John son of Baldwin and Michael son of John, both of whom appear to have held property here in the late 12th century. John owed a rent of £1. 19s. to Canterbury Cathedral Priory for a holding which c. 1220, when it was in the possession of St. Bartholomew's Priory, comprised part of 23 (q.v.), to which pertained 4 shops opposite John's mansio (probably part of 23), ex alia parte vici versus occidentem, and a house (domus) which was William le Taillur's, in atrio Sancte Marie de arcubus. Subsequently the £1. 19s. rent appears to have been due from 23 alone, although other 13th-century rentals also mention the other parts of John's former holding.

In the late 12th century Michael son of John, who was also known as Michael brother of Ralph son of John, appears to have held 2 properties from which rents were due to Canterbury Cathedral Priory. About 1220 both properties were held by Gerard son of Peter Bath: the land in St. Mary le Bow parish was charged with 6s. rent and that in St. Magnus parish was charged with 6s. 6d. rent, both rents being due in equal portions at Easter and Michaelmas. There appears to be some confusion over these rents in the 3 texts of the late 12th-century Canterbury rental. All 3 texts (Lit. MSS B 14-16) record that Michael owed 2s. 9d. rent at the feasts of the Purification of the Virgin and St. Peter ad vincula, equivalent to 5s. 6d. a year and probably due from the St. Mary le Bow property. The 2 fair copies of the rental (Lit. MSS B 14, 15) note Michael as owing in addition 5s. at Easter and 18d. at Michaelmas, probably equivalent to the 6s. 6d. due from St. Magnus parish. The third copy of the rental (Lit. MS B 16) notes Michael as owing rents of 6s. at Easter and Michaelmas, a confusion which perhaps arose because the 5s. 6d. rent was increased to 6s. and because rents due at the feasts of the Purification and St. Peter in the 12th century were by c. 1220 due at Easter and Michaelmas. About 1220 Michael son of John's former land in St. Mary le Bow parish was said to lie between the former shops of John son of Baldwin (see above) and the church of St. Mary le Bow vico parvo mediante; the 6s. rent was due from this land and from the land next to the house which had belonged to William le Tailur in the churchyard (atrium) of St. Mary le Bow. Gerard son of Peter Bath owed the rent c. 1220, but Peter Rufus answered for it on his behalf.

William le Tailur's house, which he no longer held c. 1220, presumably adjoined the churchyard and perhaps stood on land belonging to John son of Baldwin next to the land of Michael son of John. The house may therefore have stood towards the N.W. corner of the block represented by 104/1-5, much of which would appear to have been occupied by the lands of John son of Baldwin and of Michael son of John. William's house was also said c. 1220 to be next to the mansio which had belonged to Agnes sister of St. Thomas the Martyr. This mansio would have been an obvious local landmark. It may have lain within the block occupied by 1-5 or, perhaps more likely, on the W. side of Goose Lane. (fn. 2)

In the early 13th century, apparently after 1216, Michael son of John granted to Adam son of Ranulf Duket his land in St. Mary le Bow, beside the land of John son of Baldwin to the E. (the reference may be to John son of Baldwin's main property on the E. side of Bow Lane (23), rather than to the 4 shops). The land granted by Michael measured 20 1/4 ells (60 ft. 9 in.; 18.52 m.) in length and 11 ells (33 ft.; 10.06 m.) in width of King Henry's iron ell. Michael reserved 10s. rent, payable within the octaves of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist and Christmas, and warranted the grant, for which Adam gave £1. 4s. sterling as a gersum to Michael and £1. 3s. to Michael's son Richard. (fn. 3) It seems likely that this grant concerned most of Michael's land within the block occupied by 1-5, which probably measured some 75 ft. N.-S. by 50 ft. E.-W. (22.25 m. by 15.24 m.). The most likely position seems to be in the N.E. part, abutting on the churchyard and Bow Lane but not on Goose Lane. The measurements and location do not, however, correlate with any later property within the block, which was divided into several holdings of interlocking shape: the influence of the bounds given in this grant on any later arrangement of properties seems to have been minimal.

A mid 13th-century rental of Christ Church Canterbury, with later annotations, listed the heirs of Robert de Westmilne(?) as holders of the land from which St. Bartholomew's Priory owed £1. 19s., succeeded by Thomas Lambert, at least for the land on the E. side of Bow Lane: it is not clearly stated whether Lambert also held the 4 shops and the house which had once been William le Tailur's, although this seems unlikely. The 6s. rent from the land of Gerard son of Peter Bath' between the 4 shops and the church, vico medio, was no longer due, as Arnold Rufus, no doubt successor to Peter Rufus, had exchanged or redeemed it for a rent in Southwark. (fn. 4)

The development of the block between this period and the later 13th century is confused. The interest of St. Bartholomew's Priory was preserved in some form, and in the 14th century a rent of 16s. was owed from at least part of 1 (see below). A rental dated 1306 but probably incorporating earlier information mentions 4 rents of 16s. owed to the kitchener of the priory in St. Mary le Bow parish, from the rent of Robert of Westminster, William de Lyncolnia, Avice de Kent, and the daughter of Avice de Kent, and the 14th century rent is presumably identical with one of these. Robert of Westminster occurs in connection with 3 and/or 4. The same 1306 rental notes 10s. rent owed in the parish by the 'new hospital' for the rent of Juliana Aywyf; by this time the new hospital of St. Mary Spital had an interest in 1. (fn. 5)

Later thirteenth to mid-fourteenth century (104/1)

This tenement, occupying the S. part of the block, 1-5, probably included some land that owed rent to Canterbury in the 12th and early 13th centuries and some that did not. The New Hospital of St. Mary without Bishopsgate (St. Mary Spital), founded 1197 and refounded 1235, had land to the W. of Goose Lane in the 13th century (see 104/9-11) below), and in the 14th century claimed to have been seised of this property in the Goose Lane block in demesne in the time of Edward I and to have granted it to Robert de Kydemenstre, chauser, and his issue. The hospital may have acquired its interest in the property by the grant of Martin son of Martin Bodyn (see 104/8-9). Robert de Kedemenstre held a tenement in Cordewanerestrate in or before 1286, from which in 1290 10s. quit-rent was due to John son of Peter; another 15s. quit-rent was due from his tenement in the same to Philip le Taylur in or before 1292. By his will proved in 1297 Robert de Kydeminister left the tenement where he lived in St. Mary le Bow parish with all its rents and appurtenances to his wife Amabel for life, saving £1. 4s. rent which he left to his 3 children Geoffrey, Agnes, and Maud (8s. to each). The tenement and rents were to be equally divided among the children by the executors after Amabel's death. The rents associated with the property included 12s. from 2 and 5s. from 3; the latter later formed part of a 6s. 6d. rent with 1s. 6d. rent from the N. part of 1 itself. (fn. 6)

Geoffrey and Amabel were probably both dead by 1309, by which time the tenement had been divided between Agnes and Maud: the S. part (1A) went to Agnes and her husband Elyas le Tondour, and the N. part (1B) to Maud and her husband John Neel, goldbeater. In 1321 1A was held by Thomas de Manchestre and his wife Agnes: these may be the daughter of de Kydemynstre and a second husband. In 1339 Stephen atte Grove, goldsmith, and his wife Agnes, daughter of Robert de Kydemynstr', citizen and hosier (caligarius), granted the tenement with shops annexed which Agnes had as her share of her father's property in St. Mary le Bow parish, to Richard de Kiselyngbury, citizen and hosier (caligarius). The property lay between Goselane to the S. and W., Cordewanerstrete to the E., and the tenement (1B) of John Neel and his wife Maud, Agnes's sister, and the house of St. Paul's (2) held by William de Haukeden to the N. They also granted him 12s. rent from 2, part of Agnes's share of the inheritance. (fn. 7)

In 1309 John Neel, his wife Maud, Elyas le Tondour, and his wife Agnes granted to William de Welle, citizen and hosier (caligarius), £1. 13s. 4d. rent from the tenements which were John and Maud's share (1B) of the tenements late of Robert de Kedemenstre, father of Agnes and Maud, together with 12s. rent [from the tenement] which Gilbert de Lesnes, citizen and goldbeater, held of John and Maud at that time. The grant was for 8 years from 1309, with warranty and power of distraint; William de Welle gave John and Maud a sum of money. In 1321, by which time the preceding grant would have expired, John and Maud leased to Stephen de Berkyngg, hosier (calligarius), their tenement with houses and shops in Cordewanerstret in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, between the street to the W., 1A to the S., the tenement late of William de Stanes (part of 3) to the N., and the tenement of Walter de Blecchingeleghe (5) and the house held by William de Haukeden (2) to the W.; they also granted him 6s. 6d. rent, of which 5s. was due from part of 3 and 1s. 6d. from part of 1B. The lease of tenement and rent was for Stephen's life plus 4 years, paying £2. 0s. 6d. rent to the grantors, 16s. rent to St. Bartholomew's Priory, and £1 to St. Mary Spital. The property comprised or included 3 shops, of which Joan Heyron was to be allowed to hold the middle one, paying Stephen 13s. p.a.; the grantors remitted 1s. of the £2. 0s. 6d. rent so long as Joan continued to occupy the shop. In 1326 Stephen de Berkyng was one of 4 neighbours attached for the inquest on a man attacked in Cordewanerstrete. In 1339 John Neel and his wife Maud sold to Richard de Kyselingbury, citizen and hosier (caligarius), a tenement with houses in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, being Maud's share of her father Robert de Kydemynstre's estate. It lay between Cordwainer Street to the E., 5 to the W., 1A, belonging to Stephen atte Grove and his wife Agnes, Maud's sister, to the S., and 3, already belonging to Richard de Kyselingbury, to the N. They also granted a quit-rent of 4s. 8d. from a shop, part of 3, which was similarly part of Maud's share. Immediately afterwards, in a quitclaim clearly relating to both 1A and 1B, John atte Grene, son of John atte Grene son of John atte Grene of Bery, and his wife Isabel, daughter of Agnes daughter of Robert de Kidemynstre, quitclaimed to de Kyselingbury in the tenements, houses, and shops in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, between Goose Lane to the S., Goose Lane, 2, and 5 to the W., Cordwainer Street to the E., and 2 and 3 to the N., and in the total of 18s. 8d. rent granted by Stephen atte Grove and Agnes and John atte Neel and Maud. Stephen atte Grove and Agnes also quitclaimed in the whole. (fn. 8) The tenement at this time would seem to have been a reversed 'L' shape, with 1A forming the base and 1B the upper part.

Richard de Kiselyngbury, calligarius, had by 1342 been replaced by Richard de Kiselyngbury, pannarius, suggesting either that he had changed his occupation or that he had been succeeded by someone of the same name but different occupation. This man now had a substantial block of property (1A and 1B, and 3) to which in 1342 he added 2; he also held 104/13 (qqv). In 1350 Simon de Midelton, chaplain, granted Richard de Kyslyngbury, citizen and draper (and at that time mayor), a quit-rent of £1. 6s. 8d. from Richard's shop in Cordwainer Street in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, and quitclaimed in the same. It is not clear from which part of the whole property this was due. In 1355 the prior of St. Mary Spital sought against Richard de Kyslyngbury, draper, senior, a messuage, presumably 1, which he said a former prior, seised in demesne, had granted to Robert de Kydemenstre, chauser, and his issue, with reversion in default of heirs to the priory. A view was taken but the prior failed to prosecute his suit and de Kyslyngbury evidently remained in possession. In his will of 1355, proved in 1357, John de Kyllyngworth, citizen and draper, left his 6s. rent he used to receive from Richard de Kyslyngbury from the tenements once of Robert de Kydmenstre, between Cordwainer Street to the E. and Goose Lane to the W. and S.; he had acquired the rent from Sabina Poyntel widow of Roger Poyntel. There do not appear to be any earlier or later references to this rent. (fn. 9)

Richard de Kyslingbury died in 1361, and his wife Alice had his properties for life. His executors made a grant of the reversion after her death, but in 1363, while she was still in possession, the priory of St. Mary Spital sought to recover from her the messuage formerly of Robert de Kydemenstre, chauncer (or chauucer), claiming as before that it had been granted to de Kydemenstre and his issue in the time of Edward I. It had descended to his daughters and heirs Maud and Agnes; on Maud's death without issue it descended to Agnes, and on her death without issue the right reverted to the priory. This time the suit was prosecuted, the jury found for the plaintiff, and the priory recovered the property claimed. (fn. 10)

Later fourteenth century to seventeenth century (1)

It seems, from subsequent descriptions of the abutments of 1, 3, and 5, that the property recovered by the priory, and described below as 1, was subsequently smaller than 1 as held by de Kydeminstre and his daughters, and corresponds more to 1A as described above than to 1A and 1B together. Certainly by the time that the property's dimensions can be deduced, in the mid-17th century, this was the case, and there is no evidence for adjustment between the 1360s and that period. At that time it was a simple oblong some 50 ft. E.-W. and 18 ft. N.-S. (15.24 m. by 5.49 m.). (fn. 11) This in turn may indicate that St. Mary Spital's interest, and original seisin, had only been in a part of the property held by de Kyderminstre. The history of the N. part of 1 after 1363 is included in that of 3 (q.v.). The history of 1 after its recovery by the priory is for some time obscure. In 1406 and 1408 the property to the S. of part of 3 was said to be the shop held and occupied by John Davy, grocer, but it is not clear whether this refers to 1 or just to another part of 3. In 1468 the tenement to the S. of 3A was said to be the tenement formerly of Edmund Salle, now of St. Mary Spital. Salle had married Alice, widow of Richard de Kyselyngbury, and with her held the latter's other tenements; possibly they were also tenants of St. Mary Spital for 1. (fn. 12)

Very little is known of this property between the 15th and the mid 17th century. It is not certain which of several possible names in the west side of Bow Lane in the tithe assessment of 1638 refers to this property, though Mr. Shaw, holding a house worth £14 p.a. seems the most likely. In 1651 the tenement to the S. of 3A was said to be late of Roger Jones. One Roger Jones of the parish of St. Mary le Bow, merchant tailor, had died in 1609, leaving all his goods to his wife Anne, but his will makes no reference to any real property. In 1665 William Jones, clerk, sold the property, described as 2 messuages known then as the Bell and more anciently as the White Griffin, to John Fox. The occupants in 1666 were probably Richard Rogers, who had been there in 1661, and who occupied a house with 3 hearths in Bow Lane, and Robert White, bricklayer, William Rush, tailor, and Robert Gibbon, 'bodyes maker', whose names, bracketed together, occur under Goose Lane, each with one hearth. The property was burnt in the Fire and in March 1669 a foundation was surveyed for Fox, measuring 50 ft. (15.24 m.) E.-W. along Goose Lane, 17 ft. (5.18 m.) N.-S. at the E. along Bow Lane, 18 ft. 9 in. (5.72 m.) at the W. end, and adjoining Mr. Clareybote's tenement (3A) to the N. The property was rebuilt as one messuage by Fox. (fn. 13)


  • 1. M & O iv, ff. 137v, 197; CLRO, Comp Deeds K, bdl. G no. 6.
  • 2. Canterbury: MSS B15, ff. 14v-17, B14 ff. 15v-18, B 16, ff. 2-16 (late 12C rentals); Reg K, f. 66v (rental c. 1220).
  • 3. PRO, E40/1942; cartulary copy in BL, MS Cotton Vesp. F. xv, f. 197r-v, printed in L.F. Salzman (ed.), Chartulary of...Lewes, Sussex Rec. Soc. xxxviii, xl, 1932-4, and extra vol. (containing London material), 1943.
  • 4. Canterbury, Reg J, p. 335 (13C rental with additions).
  • 5. Webb, Records of St. Bartholomew's i, 470, cf 1, 3, 4, below.
  • 6. HPL 77, m. 6; HR 16(41), 19(35), 21(66), 26(39). For the rents from 2 and 3, see those properties.
  • 7. LBD, 213 (f. 98); LBE, 162-3 (f. 134), HR 66(108).
  • 8. LBD, 213 (f. 98), LBE, 162-3 (f. 134) Cal Cor R, 169-70; HR 66(94, 108-9, 112).
  • 9. GL, MS 25121/223; HR 78(216, 217); HPL 77, m. 6; HR 85(99).
  • 10. HR 89(145), 90(54, 80); Cal Close R 1360-4, p. 383; HPL 85, m. 7d.
  • 11. PRO, SC11/977; M & O iv, f. 135; see below.
  • 12. HR 134(9, 39), 136(8).
  • 13. Inhabitants in 1638, p. 109 (the headings for the E. and W. sides of Bow Lane have been transposed); GL, MS 7811 (18C copy of lease 1651); PRO, PROB11/113, f. 410; CLRO, Assessments Box 3.6, f. 6; PRO, E179/252/32/16; PRO, C107/75 (box incl. deed of 1694, reciting earlier deeds); M & O iv, f. 135.