St. Mary le Bow 104/4

Pages 227-228

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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This tenement lay between the lane leading to St. Mary le Bow churchyard to the N., 3 to the S., Bow Lane to the E., and a vacant plot or churchyard belonging to St. Mary le Bow to the W. At an unknown date, probably in the early 15th century, the secular buildings on the site disappeared and part of the vestry (vestibulum) of the church was extended across it. There is no separate record of the property after the mid 15th century, and it may have been entirely taken into the church buildings and churchyard.

In or before 1260, Adam dictus le Brok and William de Enefeld, as executors of Roger de Amiens, tawyer (allutarius), whose will was proved in 1259, sold two shops formerly belonging to Roger in Coruaiserestrate in the parish of St. Mary le Bow to Robert of Westminister, tawyer (allutarius). The shops lay between the semita qua itur ad dictam ecclesiam to the N. and another shop already belonging to Robert (3) to the S. Robert was succeeded by Adam (le) Brok in 3 (q.v.) and by John le Seur (also le Asseyor, le Settere, meaning 'sewer' or 'embroiderer') in 4. In 1274 Geoffrey Godard, citizen, left 1/2 mark (6s. 8d.) rent from the shop of John le Seour in Corueyserestrate next to the church of St. Mary le Bow for sale by his executors. By his will, proved in 1282, John le Seur left his tenements to be divided among his wife and children, or for sale, the profits to be so divided. In 1285 his daughter Lucy, of full age, granted to Nicholas le Seur a tenement she had by legacy of her father in the parish of St. Mary le Bow, lying between 3 to the S., Cordwainer Street to the E., the lane leading to the church to the N., and the cemetery to the W. Nicholas was to render her £1. 2s. yearly, and do the services to the chief lords of the fee, and gave her 1 mark (13s. 4d.) as a gersum. Lucy warranted the grant. In 1286 she and her husband, Robert de Wlueuewyke, granted the £1. 2s. rent from this tenement to John de Bankewelle, citizen, and his wife Cecilia, to hold for ever for a clove of garlic for all services. The grantees gave 12 marks (£8) as a gersum. (fn. 1)

The succession to this property after Nicholas le Seur is not known; a reference in 1311 to Philip de Hatfeld as N. neighbour of part of 3 could mean that he occupied 4, but could equally well mean he held the N. part of 3. In 1401, however, the shop was said to have lately been held by Robert Rysby, draper; in the 1390s Rysby held 2, probably as tenant or feoffee of the widow of Richard de Kyslyngbury, and may also have held 3 (q.q.v.) of the same, and it is possible therefore that 4 had also become part of de Kyslyngbury's estate. The £1. 2s. rent or quit-rent seems to have descended for some time in the Banquell family probably as 104/31 (q.v.), and before 1401 (probably in 1397) was granted with several other Banquell properties by John Wakeryng, Thomas Middleton, clerks, Walter Newenton, Walter Cotton, and Robert Neuton, clerk, to Alan Everard, Thomas Knolles, citizen and grocer, and John Warmynton, clerk. Alan Everard released his right to his 2 co-feoffees, and in 1401 they granted the rent, said to be due from a shop with solar over it in Hosyerlane in the parish of 104, between 3 to the S., a small lane (venella) next to the church to the N., Hosyerlane to the E., and an empty plot of land to the W., lately held by Robert Rysby, draper, to Walter Cotton, citizen and mercer, for life. After his death the rent and other properties included in the same grant were to remain to Alan Everard, Thomas Cotton, Thomas Elsyng, and Roger Harleton, and their heirs and assigns, for ever. In 1406 and 1408 the shop of John Ragoner, tailor, lay to the N. of part of 3, but again it is not certain if this means he held 4 or the N. part of 3. (fn. 2)

The descent of the 6s. 8d. quit-rent due from 4 indicates what had happened to it by the mid 15th century. In 1304 the rent was acquired from the executors of Geoffrey Godard by Richard Costantyn, who had married the widow of Simon Godard, one of Geoffrey's executors. In his will, dated and proved 1332, Costantyn left the rent, describing it as 6s. 8d rent from a shop which John le Setter sometime held in the parish of St. Mary le Bow in Cordwainer Street beside that church to the N. (iuxta dictam ecclesiam ex parte aquiloni), to Sir John de Tyerne, rector of St. Bartholomew the Little, for life, with reversion to the testator's heirs. The rent was still held by the Costantyn family in the 15th century. In his will of 1431, proved 1432, John Costantyn son and heir of John Costantyn, esquire, left all his lands and rents in the parish of St. Mary le Bow and elsewhere to his son William in tail. In 1451 William Costantyn of London, gentleman, son and heir of John Costantyn, granted the 6s. 8d. rent, which he had inherited from his father, to William Gerveys, clerk, William Stephenes, mercer, and Reginald Longedon, girdler, citizens. The rent was due from land, sometime with a shop built on it, on which part of the vestry of the church of St. Mary le Bow was now built (unde parcella cum parte vestibuli ecclesie beate Marie de Arcubus iam construitur). John le Settere had once (dudum) held the shop. This suggests that the shop and any other secular buildings had disappeared, and that the property had been acquired by the church. The N. boundary of 3B (q.v.) in 1464 was said to be a parva venella. It is not certain when the vestry had been built, or whether the church had been enlarged at other times in this direction. Although the shop had ceased to exist, the 6s. 8d. quit-rent seems still to have been claimable in some way in 1514, when John Turnour, citizen and spurrier, and his wife Joan, quitclaimed in such a rent from a certain shop which John le Settere sometime held in Cordwainer Street, beside the church of St. Mary le Bow towards the N., to George Monoux, citizen and alderman, to whom they had previously granted it. (fn. 3)

At the time of the Fire the N. boundary of 3B was some 13 or 14 ft. (3.96 m. to 4.27 m.) to the S. of the S. wall of the 11th-century crypt of the church. Five feet 6 inches (1.68 m.) of this space was taken up by the way to the churchyard, over which passage the owner of 3B had rooms which were built up against the wall of the schoolhouse; this schoolhouse presumably occupied the remaining small space between the passageway and the S. wall of the church. (fn. 4)


  • 1. HR 2(73, 92), 6(47), 13(97), 16(31, 59). For a discussion of the Sueurs' and Setteres' occupation, see M. Fitch, 'The London Makers of Opus Anglicanum', Trans LMAS 27(1976), pp. 288-96, though this account of the location and size of John le Settere's property supersedes that given there.
  • 2. HR 39(170), 129(87), 134(9, 39), 136(8).
  • 3. HR 60(46), 161(53), 180(15), 194(31), 237(16).
  • 4. M & O iv, ff. 137v, 197; CLRO, Comp Deeds K, bdl. G, no. 6.